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Eating healthy all year round is something everyone battles with and I am not different. As a Latina I have a “yoyo” weight, I’m sure, like other women in other cultures do as well. I want to share with you some tips for staying healthy all year long that I have used and believe will work for you too. Plus, one of my secret weapons, a weekly meal planner (booklet).
Tip 1. Drink plenty of fluid (water) during the day.
Tip 2. Drink one or two glasses of V8 Veggie Blends. This juice drink has 1 full serving of vegetables and the fruit(s) that I have always loved since I was a little girl. Carrot Mango is my favorite. Has the veggie and fruit I love and could eat (in this case, drink) all day long. Perfect for breakfast or as an afternoon treat!
If you are like me you have lots of errands to take care of during the week while the kiddos are in school. I love going to Walmart, because I find everything from food, to cleaning products, to craft and arts supplies. One of the items I always have in my shopping list is beverages and not just any juice drink will do. V8 Veggie Blends are a healthy option for my family and we all have a favorite. Each 8oz. serving is 60 calories or less with no sugar added and no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
Want to know more? V8® in it’s simplest way is a delicious blend of vegetables with a touch of fruit. These healthy beverages contain 75% juice, 1 full serving of vegetables per 8oz serving, and are an excellent source of antioxidant vitamins A, C, & E. Perfect for my on the go lifestyle and as a mom I like to know my girls are drinking a juice drink that is not only delicious, but also good for them.
Tip 3. Create a weekly meal plan. It will help you see on paper exactly what you and your family are eating during the week. You can also keep a list of items needed for each recipe, it helps when going grocery shopping.
My mom always planned her meals. Her grocery list went along with the meals of the week. Her mom did the same in a larger scale. My grandmother had nine children and was constantly cooking. Back in the day the pantry looked different and the refrigeration was non existent or just making it’s debut. Meal planning was a must for my mom and her mom. It is also a must in my home and something my girls are learning, specially by example. They are constantly sitting with me during the weekend to plan meals they want during the upcoming week(s) and helping me out with the shopping list. It’s a win-win for me! I cook what they want while passing down a generational lesson. Meal planning!
Weekly Meal Planner Booklet
- 1 Felt Sheet (color of your choice)
- Weekly Meal Planner (printable)
- Hole puncher
- Ribbon (about 17″ inches)
Steps to follow:
Print out 15-10 sheets of the Weekly Meal Planner on both sides of each sheet (double sided). I made mine with 15 sheets, enough for one month. You can make the booklet as thin or thick as you wish.
Fold pages in half, measure 1/2 inch from the outside towards the inside right in the middle of each sheet (refer to image below) and make a hole with the hole puncher. Do the same with the felt. You may need the scissors for the felt in case the hole puncher didn’t go through properly. You can find this supplies in your local Walmart. Love it when I can purchase everything I need in one same place.
Arrange the Weekly Meal Planner inside the felt and tie it with the ribbon.
Now you have a lovely weekly meal planner booklet you can keep in your kitchen and take with you when shopping. I chose this lovely bold purple felt and designed the sheets with lovely tropical flowers because those colors make me happy and reminds me of my lovely island; Puerto Rico. You can’t get more tropical than the Caribbean. Reminds me of home! Pick a felt color that makes you happy.
Tip 4. Go for afternoon walks. I love walking with my girls and husband. This gives us some uninterrupted time to chat about anything we wish (no cell phones or devices). Or just by myself. Sometimes I need some “me” time and a nice 20-30 minute walk around the neighborhood is just perfect for me.
My parents walk everyday for an hour. When I was in Puerto Rico visiting last summer, I joined them. That was my favorite part of the day during the entire time we spent in the island.
Tip 5. Do your best not to eat late at night. I try not to eat after 8pm. If I am feeling extra tempted to eat something or I am really hungry I would go for something light like cereal or a light popcorn. Don’t be too hard on yourself. There are some exceptions, like vacations or late holiday dinners. If we are having family or friends over I do my best to be a wonderful hostess without the guilt of having to eat everything I lay on the table.
Food and being around the kitchen table is part of our culture. Everyone that comes to my house automatically gathers around the kitchen table (counter/island) and I just love all the memories that are made there. My best tip for you would be to enjoy this new year. You know your body better than anyone. Treat it with love and learn about the food you cook with (and eat).
Go by your local Walmart and find the ample variety of V8 juice drinks. Which is your favorite V8 Veggie Blends? I already told you I really like Carrot Mango. But, I have to say that my new favorite is the Healthy Greens. Always wanted to try a green juice drink and I am glad it was a V8. It’s delicious!